For those that haven't been glued to Challenge TV at 9pm every Sunday night for the past month or so (or indeed been reading our various blogs on the subject), you will have missed what has been a tremendous showcase of British wrestling talent. TNA has been affording an incredible platform to some of the UK's biggest wrestling stars and they in turn have been "maximising their minutes".
For those that have missed out, there is a reprieve because TNA has just announced that British Boot Camp 2 finalists Grado, Dave Mastiff, Rampage Brown, Noam Dar, Kay Lee Ray and Mark Andrews will be joining the roster for it's forthcoming tour (January 29-31) which already includes TNA legends Bobby Roode, Magnus, MVP, Eric Young and the winner of Boot Camp 1, Rockstar Spud to name but a few. What's more, we can reveal that as a special thank you to the UK fans, the six Boot Camp 2 finalists will be holding a free 'meet & greet' at each event - signing autographs from when doors open until the start of the shows in Glasgow, Manchester and London. According to TNA President, Dixie Carter there are also some very exciting things planned for the tour including "...several surprises fans will not want to miss". "Being able to meet the finalists of British Boot Camp before every show is an added bonus" she has said.
Be it Samoa Joe, Gail Kim or Al Snow, the TNA Boot Camp 2 judges have all told us that they believe the UK to be packed full of talent. Shows across the country are heaving and the stock of British talent is rising. Combining TNA with brand UK is certainly going to make for a good night. For those that haven't been to a TNA live event, we can attest to it being a fantastic show. The company is known for its focus on in-ring excellence and given the calibre of the UK stars on display, the bar is being set very high indeed.
The January shows will be taking place in a new context for the company. Regular readers will know that we have asked numerous TNA talents and others over recent months about their views on the future of the company. The resounding message that we received was that TNA is tenacious and that it's continuing development could only be a positive for the wrestling business as a whole. So it was, that the company recently announced its partnership with Discovery Communications, the media group that will broadcast TNA's flagship IMPACT wrestling show across the states on their 'Destination America' network from January. The wrestling press appears to have kept its powder dry about this announcement and there seems to be tremendous good will out there for TNA, the little engine that could.
Given its new US partner, its unique British showcase and the existing talent that will be performing in January, you can bet that Royal Ramblings will be going down to Wembley to check out the London show. You can get tickets for all shows here or direct from the tour venues in Glasgow (Thursday January 29th), Manchester (Friday January 30th) or London (Saturday January 31st) meanwhile, TNA IMPACT Wrestling is broadcast on Challenge TV every Sunday night at 9pm.
Next week will be the final of British Boot Camp 2, in which Rampage Brown, Kay Lee Ray and Mark Andrews will face-off for a TNA contract. If you'd like to read more about the UK's talent pool, see our articles on the British wrestling scene (part 1 and part 2) and our earlier articles on British Boot Camp 2. The final will be on Challenge TV next week - miss it, miss out.